Breastfeeding Awareness Sessions


As a mother of three who has breast fed all of my children ( some longer than others ) I felt that I wanted to address a recent develop in regards to breast feeding images and in particular their place in social media. I found that I had a unique opportunity to do so through my photography, and felt that I could not only help raise awareness, but use the images to tell a story. When I had my first daughter Maya, breastfeeding was the obvious choice for us. I grew up around women who breastfed and I knew it was the healthiest option for us both. The first few weeks were great breast-feeding at home. A comfy couch, the privacy of your living room or bedroom to get that perfect latch, which often takes time and a few tries, and a pillow or boppy under your arm.  However, eventually you have to leave your house and with that comes feeding your new baby in public. A cover up for us just never worked, but I felt like I had to either cover or go somewhere discrete. I was young, I didn’t know any better. I eventually learned which stores were ‘breastfeeding friendly’ and I tried to stick to those very few stores. When I say breastfeeding friendly, I mean they had a comfy chair  in a lounge in their restroom. As isolating as it felt, at least I could soothe my hungry and sometimes screaming baby.


Then I had Eden, and we did the same with a bit more confidence. One difference was that at about the same point in time social media was introduced and it was a wonderful resource and outlet for me as a stay at home mom. I began to see this incredible, almost unbelievable shift in our society. Breastfeeding became controversial. What? How could something so natural become so controversial. I didn’t understand. Soon I began to see that photos of moms nursing their children was cause for their Instagram and Facebook pages to be flagged and or shut down. This infuriated me. I had Henry ( my third child) this year, and became very tuned into the  negative attitude towards breastfeeding.  It was everywhere. Everyone seemed to have an opinion on what was ‘appropriate’. In an age when sexuality is seeped into every corner of our world it seemed that breast-feeding was now somehow viewed as sexual or shown with sexual “undertones”. Hello!!! This is why women have breasts, to feed their babies and children. Where did this get lost?  This is new for our society. It wasn’t always like this. Somehow breastfeeding became taboo.  Thankfully with Henry I am more seasoned, confident and educated. I breast feed anywhere with confidence and don’t feel the need to be covered up. I love nursing Henry.


When I first sent out the call to action for breastfeeding moms the response was somewhat overwhelming. So I anticipate expanding on this project  (once my wedding season is over) and I will work to document this beautiful, magnificent bond between mother and child. This is not to offend bottle feeding mamas, in fact I would love to incorporate that into the project at some point, as I do realize everyone has different circumstances. However, there seems to be no bottle fed babies pictures on Facebook and Instagram being flagged or shutdown, and there seems to be no debate about it being offensive. If women can post without judgment photos of their bottle fed baby freely and proudly then the certainly should be able to post breastfeeding photos. I want that world for my daughters. I want them to proudly and freely breastfeed anywhere anytime.



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